Meet a Houston Mom: Meet Dr. Aida Khanum CEO of Pediatric Pod Concierge Pediatrics | West University Moms

Where are you from originally and how long have you lived in Houston?

I grew up in Karachi, Pakistan, where I completed medical school at 22. I had the privilege of getting a chance to experience working in the health care system in Switzerland, England, and the United States, which helped me decide where I wanted to obtain my subspecialty training. When it was time to specialize, I landed in New York City for pediatric residency training and then made my way down to Houston for a fellowship at Baylor/Texas Children’s Hospital. Originally, I planned to join the World Health Organization, with the aim of working internationally and traveling the world. However, I met my husband in 2003 and we decided to make Houston our home and have been here for the last 21 years! Why Houston, you ask? Well, I’m a fan of the heat, and this city’s vibrant diversity and slower pace of life has won me over. 

So, that’s my journey—from Karachi to Houston, with a dash of love and adventure thrown in!

Child(ren) and Age(s)? 

I have 3 wonderful boys – Daniyal who is 16 years old, Mikail who is 15 years old, and Zaviyar who is 11 years old.

One thing people would be surprised to know about you…

I think people are always surprised when I tell them I am half Swiss and half Pakistani and that I speak German along with Spanish, Urdu/Hindi, and some basic French!

Favorite local activities to do in Houston? 

There are so many fantastic things we’ve gotten to experience in Houston over the years! When the kiddos were little, we had a blast exploring all the city’s family-friendly gems, whether that meant hanging with the animals at the zoo, exploring the lush trails of Hermann Park, and getting our nature fix at the butterfly museum. 

Now that they’re all grown up, we’ve traded in the playgrounds for athletic fields. Bellaire Park is a family favorite for friendly soccer matches, intense games of cricket, and just tossing a frisbee around with friends on a sunny afternoon.

Of course, no Houston experience would be complete without hitting up the beach. We’ll hop in the car and cruise down to Galveston any chance we get for some waterfront relaxation. Those salty ocean breezes just can’t be beaten!

We’re also big fans of soaking up Houston’s incredible cultural scene too. The Summer Chills series at the Alley Theater is an absolute must – such talented performers taking the stage!

Last but definitely not least, you know we’re all about that food life in this family. Houston’s amazing diversity means we get to go on delicious culinary adventures whenever we can, sampling authentic flavors from around the globe.

Houston has really been so good to us over the decades. With so many wonderful experiences under our belts, it’s hard not to feel blessed by this vibrant, exciting city!

Are you involved in a business venture, a local organization, a creative endeavor, or in the corporate world? Please share! 

After completing my residency in Pediatrics in Syracuse, New York, and a Fellowship at Baylor College of Medicine/Texas Children’s Hospital, I simultaneously knocked out a master’s in public health from UT School of Public Health. For the past 21 years, I’ve been practicing as a Board-Certified Pediatrician in the Greater Houston area, witnessing firsthand how parents juggle their personal and professional lives like expert circus performers.

As a full-time working mom with three kids of my own, I quickly realized there was a need for a pediatric clinic that provided personalized quality care, premium access, and a convenient, neighborhood-y vibe without breaking the bank. That’s how Pediatric Pod was born!

Ever since putting down my roots in Bellaire back in 2006, I had a vision of becoming the go-to expert for all things kid-related, guiding parents through those tough “Why did they do that?” and “Is this normal?” moments. At Pediatric Pod, Houston’s Premier Concierge Pediatric Practice, your child is the star of the show. Personalized care whenever you need it? You got it! We work together to ensure optimal health with the time and attention you deserve.

My concierge membership practice focuses on building real relationships and providing top-notch, affordable care (less than a daily cup of coffee!) With a smaller patient panel, I can spend more quality time during appointments and even offer same-day sick visits. Plus, my patients get direct text access to me! Families from all over town love investing in their child’s health this way, feeling like the one and only patient.

Some have even called it “having a best friend for a pediatrician,” and I’m flattered! This concierge model is a fresh approach to primary care that’s already helped countless families stay healthier while spending less. With zero copays and convenient scheduling, you receive ongoing care directly from me.

Good health insurance doesn’t necessarily mean good access to your doctor. That’s where direct primary care comes in, allowing you to actually see your physician and reap those better health outcomes for your kiddo. The membership covers all the visits, while insurance kicks in for pricier services like vaccines, bloodwork, referrals, medications and urgent/ER care. For the uninsured, we’ve got discounted lab and pharmacy options too.

We also offer medical-grade ear piercings for non-members and a newborn in-hospital package. Want to test-drive our concierge-style before joining? No problem – we’ve got a one-time “try it out” option. I also provide Autism evaluations for the community, which are sorely needed with 1 in 36 US kids now being diagnosed. Early intervention is key, but long waitlists can be a roadblock, so I’m here to offer ADOS-2 testing in a stress-free environment.

I’m also big on sharing helpful information, namely through educational material, via social media, so make sure to visit the website at and follow us on Facebook (Pediatric Pod Concierge Pediatrics), Instagram, TikTok, and YouTube (@pediatricpod).

How has the Houston community been instrumental in getting you to where you are now?

There’s just something so heartwarming about how supportive this community is when it comes to small businesses and women-owned ventures, isn’t there? As someone fascinated by both medicine and the business side of things, I have to admit – when I first started my practice, I was a total newbie in the entrepreneurial world. No business background whatsoever!

But you know what they say, when one door closes, a whole bunch of awesome people open up windows of knowledge. I reached out to a long list of pediatricians around town, determined to learn what inspired them to open their own practices and how they made it happen. And you know what? Every single one of them was an absolute gem, offering invaluable information and guidance. With that kind of support system, there was no looking back!

The network of wonderful people I’ve met over the years has been simply amazing. Learning new things from brilliant minds has truly shaped my practice into what it is today. It’s like a constant masterclass in pediatrics and entrepreneurship!

Speaking of brilliant minds, the diversity in this city is just simply the best. No matter where you’re from, you can join this vibrant community and feel right at home. That welcoming spirit has meant the world to me.

As such, I was honored when local media giants like Fox26, Channel 2, and ABC13 invited me to share my expertise on various health topics over the years. As someone passionate about educating the community, these opportunities to get the word out were priceless. 

At the end of the day, it’s all about paying it forward, learning from each other, and celebrating the incredible people that make this place so special. I’m forever grateful to be part of such a supportive, dynamic community of go-getters!

What is the best advice for juggling mommyhood and running a business (or volunteering, working, etc.)?  

I think the best thing I did was make my practice a total family affair from the very start. My children were right there with me as I built out the space, picked the perfect name, and hung their adorable artwork on the walls. They’ve even come to work with me! Early on, I learned that everything I do is for my loved ones. So, I’ve made sure to always loop them in on the work goals, stresses, wins, and losses. That way, they feel like they’re a real part of this awesome business journey! It definitely made those times when I had to put work first a little easier.

The key has been refusing to choose between being a present mom (and the mommy duties that come with it) and providing my patients with top-notch healthcare. Sure, it’s a juggling act, but I’ve been lucky enough to pull it off more often than not. How, you ask? Two words: family time. We’re talking quality car jams on the ride home from school, lively dinner conversations full of laughs, and just soaking up those blissful quiet moments together. Every little chance to make wonderful memories, I seize it!

Seriously, parents – don’t let the hustle and bustle of life pass you by. Be present, have fun, and create tons of priceless moments with your kiddos. Those years? They fly by in a blink! So cherish every second while you can.

What would you tell the old “You” before you had kids? 

I always wonder what I did with my time before I had kids, but I guess I must have had a lot of free time. I would say sleep plenty and don’t stress over the little things. Also, it’s okay to have things not perfectly in order or even splurge on travel; we are a family of 5 now and we love to go on trips, which has become a very expensive hobby! However, we’re creating unforgettable experiences as a family, something money truly can’t buy.

Funniest shortcut/routine for helping you through parenthood? 

I’m still learning, but getting the kids involved in household chores has been such a blessing. My middle son loves baking, so we’ll all get together in the kitchen to cook up something delicious. Then everyone pitches in to clean up afterward – it’s become our little routine. 

Not only does it allow us to spend quality time together, but it’s teaching my kids important life skills. They’re learning tasks like measuring ingredients, doing dishes, and tidying up after themselves. More importantly, it’s giving them a window into everything that goes into running a household and being a parent.

By including them in these simple chores, my kids are gaining an appreciation for the work it takes to keep our home running smoothly. No taking Mom and Dad for granted over here! Plus, we’ve managed to make housework…fun? Well, as fun as chores can be. There’s something satisfying about the whole family working together towards a common goal.

At the end of the day, we’ve created a bonding experience out of what could have just been dreaded tasks. Instead of viewing chores as a bore, my kids now see them as an opportunity to connect as a family. And who knows, maybe these little quality moments will become some of their most cherished memories one day!

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